Jonathan Babineaux says he and his younger brother Jordan have always had “big dreams” and a willingness to pursue those dreams.
Jonathan, a defensive tackle for the Atlanta Falcons, and Jordan, a safety for the Tennessee Titans, are not only living out their athletic dream of playing in the NFL, but today another goal of the brother tandem will be realized.
The Babineaux brothers are not only football players, they are also filmmakers with their own company called Two Brothers Productions.
Today, their first feature film, entitled “Woman Thou Art Loosed: On the 7th Day” gets a national limited release in just over 100 AMC theaters around the country. They are executive producers of the film
“There should be a lot of excitement and to actually see it in theater is going to be exciting. I'm pretty sure I'll be speechless once the movie starts,” said Jonathan, who will watch the movie from Atlanta with family members.
The film is in conjunction with Bishop T.D. Jakes and is part of Codeblack Entertainment and the cast features the likes of Blair Underwood and Pam Grier. Jonathan's Falcons teammate, running back Michael Turner, invested in the project and is also listed as one of the film's executive producers.
“We started our production company about three years ago. We started out doing comedy and eventually got to the point where we're at now, where we've had the opportunity to make our first movie with Bishop T.D. Jakes,” Jonathan said. “When this opportunity was presented to us, there was no thinking about it, and here we are now.”
The original “Woman Thou Art Loosed” appeared in 2004, and the film the Babineauxs are involved with is not exactly a sequel, but related and faith-based in its content, somewhat in the vein of Tyler Perry's movies, said Jordan.
“It's faith-based, no doubt, but it's not directly that way,” Jordan said. “It's a story of trials and separation and sin within a live story, but in the end, everyone comes back to the church. It has a real story line, and I think everyone can relate to it in some sort of way. It's rated PG-13, and it has some strong scenes it it, but at the end of the day, I think it's gonna involve everyone coming back to where we all got started.”
The film release is not their first venture to see the light of day, but it is their first one to be in theaters.
They are part of a website called Codeblack.com that operates similar to Netflix and concentrates on urban content. They have been involved with a pair of successful DVDs featuring comedians Kevin Hart and Mike Epps in conjunction with Shaquille O'Neal's All-Star Comedy Tour.
“We've been fortunate enough to partner with the Shaq All-Star Comedy Tour. When Shaq had his comedy tour in Dallas three years ago, that was our first taste of getting involved with that,” Jordan said. “Since then, we've done some projects with some great comedians including 'Seriously Funny' by Kevin Hart and Mike Epps, 'Live at Club Nokia.' But this is our biggest project, this film that is hitting the theatres.”
The Babineauxs have long loved movies and television, and Jordan majored in broadcasting at Southern Arkansas.
“It started because it was something Jordan always wanted to do,” Jonathan recalled. “Broadcasting and journalism, that was his major. Being able to watch our favorite movies and TV shows together was something we've always enjoyed.
“And we both have always been the type to dream big and think big and wanting to do big things. I really think this is our second career after football is over.”
The brothers are looking to branch out even further.
Jordan took part in the NFL's Hollywood Boot Camp last week, and while he had hoped to land a director's role in the short film the players who partook produced, he wound up getting a different and challenging role altogether.
“Initially I wanted to direct, but I wound up being an actor in it,” Jordan said. “It triggered something else. I had always been thinking that I wanted to produce and direct, but now because of that I got a little different aspect of it, and I'm looking into maybe taking some acting classes. Working in film and television is something I feel very strongly about and producing content in general.”
Jonathan is pleased with how far their film work has come along in three years.
“Forming a production company and seeing how far we've gotten in the last three years is truly exciting for us. Hopefully, we can continue to broaden ourselves and do different things,” Jonathan said. “You never know what you're gonna run into in this type of business. The main thing is to have our audience to be able to enjoy what ever we're producing. It is truly a blessing with the position we're in and to be able to do things we've done so far in our lives. Since we were little kids we always dreamed big and tried our best to live out our dreams.”